This 1946 film seems extremely dull now. The rules of etiquette go on and on. I am glad my generation was later. The over all production has little creativity.
September 14, 2003 Subject:
Dating Duhs and Don'ts.
somewhat blah and dissapointing portrait of two couples going out on a Junior prom. Margaret and Jerry, who are going steady and know all about the proper etiquette on doing this sort of thing. and Helen and Frank who, of course, are shown to be the "what not to do" couple. I was somewhat puzzled at Frank's total disagreement and befuddlement at the basic elements of dating (which led me to believe he aint interested, if ya know what I mean wink wink nudge nudge) and how Jerry, rather oddly, is a fatherly figure to him (your socks don't match!) Soon, they're off to the prom, and I don't know. Either's Frank's total boredom at the dance rubbed off on me (the jealousy subplot was silly) or I was just getting bored. Anyways, it's always interesting to see this type of film in color, but it just didn't hold my interest,
September 4, 2003 Subject:
Don't jiggle the hot girl
Presents the amusing idea that all you have to do is point out to your girlfriend that she's acting jealous, and she'll realize how ridiculous she is.
Goofus and Gallant take their best girls to a very dull prom. The whole thing is presided over by a very didactic narrator. You don't even get to really experience Goofus' etiquette violations, because you never get to actually hear what the characters are saying to each otherÂÂyou just have to take the narrator's word that Goofus screwed up again. This is a little less mean than some other films of its type, though, because often Gallant steps in and corrects Goofus before he has a chance to make any big-time gaffes. There are a few bizarre moments, such as the narrator telling Goofus that at formal affairs men wear dark clothes in order to set off the women's colorful gowns, and that this is an example of "treating her the way you'd like to be treated" (So does that mean Goofus would like his girl to dress in a dark suit when he wears a colorful gown?), or one of the girls telling the other she is wearing too much jewelry over the phone, before she's even seen her. Dorky fun.
Ratings: Camp/Humor Value: ****. Weirdness: ****. Historical Interest: ****. Overall Rating: ****. Also available on Exploitation Mini-Classics, Vol. 2.
This film portrays the experiences of two couples attending a high school Junior Prom from the time the double date is arranged until the boys see their friends home.
The first scene takes place after class one day, when Helen and Margaret are approached by Frank and Jerry, respectively, for dates to the Prom. Frank asks for the company of Helen with hesitance and only after prodding by Jerry, who, in contrast approaches Margaret with confidence and sincerity. A few days later when the four are together for after-school refreshment, Margaret, at Jerry's suggestion, steers the conversation into corsage preferences, thus affording Frank, who has not dated Helen before, a chance to learn her likes and dislikes.
The next scene, concerned with proper dress for the Prom shows Jerry criticizing Frank's socks and tie as being too loud for the semi-formal nature of the Prom. Likewise, Margaret and Helen are seen in a last-minute telephone exchange of ideas on proper make-up and hair ornamentation.
As the boys, driving Frank's car call first for his date Jerry restrains him from blowing the horn for Helen and later follows Frank into the house and gives him Helen's corsage which he had forgotten to take with him. Meanwhile, Frank has experienced a little difficulty in meeting Helen's parents, and he also mishandles the already bad corsage situation. Even while the three are on their way to Margaret's house Frank feels ill at ease, and while Jerry is talking pleasantly with Margaret's parents inside, Frank and Helen have a difficult time making conversation in the car.
Upon their arrival at the Country Club, Jerry sees to it that Frank waits patiently while the girls retire to arrange their corsages and to powder. But a little later Jerry is not at his best in handling the introductions to the evening's chaperones. Before they begin to dance, the couples agree on a rendezvous and work out their dance programs with a third couple. Once on the dance floor Frank demonstrates a tendency to talk too little, and Margaret too much, and while these two on the sidelines watch Helen and Jerry enjoying a dance, Margaret begins to display some jealousy. As the commentator discusses the relative faults of the persons involved in the situation the Prom comes to a close and the two couples say goodnight to the chaperones.
It is not until a little later, however, while seated in a cafe for after-Prom eats, that Margaret, when confronted with a direct question from Jerry, abandons her sulky attitude, and harmony prevails once more among the four. Frank helps Helen by suggesting a dish she might like and properly places the order for her.
As the group leaves the restaurant the commentator reviews some of the things
learned during the evening, especially by Frank, and continues as each of the boys sees the girls to the door of their home. Since Jerry and Margaret have been dating for some time, a goodnight kiss is considered proper, but Frank very wisely merely offers his hand to Helen. Imitating Jerry's example he does open the door for Helen, and leaves her happily with the promise of another date soon.
Quotes from contemporary reviewers: "...concerned with the etiquette of 'dating,' it presents in dramatic form a pattern of standard, positive behavior...."
"contibuting to the cultural development of young people."
"Presents a high-standard pattern of positive behavior...directed by qualified authorities in educational techniques and motion picture dramatics."
"...members of the committee agreed that this film's production is a definate contribution to the fulfillment of a long-felt need...it will undoubtedly be in great demand."
"Some members of the committee felt that the setting was too sophisticated as reflected in the wealthy homes of the girls and the country club locale for the Prom."
NO SYNC SOUND. SHOWS EXPERIENCES OF 2 COUPLES ON PROM NIGHT. VARIOUS PROBLEMS SUCH AS SELECTING DRESS & MAKING INTROS. FTG. LOS ANGELES TEENS FROM UPPER MIDDLE CLASS FAMILIES. CHAPERONES, DANCING, BAND, MANNERS, NIGHTCLUBS, KISSING.
Ken Smith sez: Another film that forces European formality down the throats of casual Americans (How Do You Do? is an even better example). This slow-moving production stresses consideration and "correctness" but there are so many rules to remember that the kids hardly have any time for fun. Maybe that was the point. Watch for the scene where "Frank" is advised to wear a "quiet pattern" for his tie as well as socks that don't clash. "Allow the ladies to be more colorful."
TEENAGERS PROMS DANCING DANCES NIGHTCLUBS DINING EATING FOOD RESTAURANTS CHAPERONES MANNERS KISSING DATING ROMANCE LOS ANGELES FAMILY LIFE HOMES HOUSES HIGH SCHOOLS AUTOMOBILES PARENTS INTRODUCTIONS ADOLESCENTS ETIQUETTE ANXIETY HUMOR CALIFORNIA AUTOMOBILES DOORS RESTAURANTS CLASSROOMS BOYS GIRLS